Microplastics found at the highest point on Earth as the glaciers around Mount Everest’s death zone melt

Microplastics are one of the most harmful side effects of humans using the planet, and they’re increasingly being found in hard to reach planes.

After being detected in the deepest point on the Earth, the Marina Tech, microplastics have now been found near the Earth’s highest point — the death zone of Mount Everest.

It’s called the ‘death zone’ because that’s where the level of oxygen is insufficient to sustain human life over an extended period. It is defined as any area located over 8,000 meters above sea level. Last year, at least 11 people died in Mount Everest’s death zone within a week when the trail was opened up.

Samples collected from near the summit and the valley below revealed substantial quantities of polyester, acrylic, nylon, and polypropylene fiber — materials commonly used in manufacturing outdoor clothing, tents, and climbing ropes — according to data collected on a Mount Everest expedition consisting of 10 research teams.

Using the same data, another study points out that the glaciers around Mount Everest have thinned by more than 100 meters since the 1960s. More worryingly, the rate of ice mass loss has consistently been getting faster over the last six decades.

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